How would you describe your music to someone who hasn’t heard it?

I like to say that my music is your new best friend. People often listen to it and think “that’s exactly how I feel”. I would describe the sound as Soul with an edge.

Why did you start singing, has music always been in the family?

Anyone who has ever come to my house will know that it pretty much has music coming out of it constantly. My dad, in particular, sings all the time, in the house, on the street, and at work. As a kid all I wanted to do was copy him, so I tried to mimic the noises he made. I’ve been singing ever since, sometimes to try and drown out my dad’s singing.

Can you remember what your first experience of performing at a gig?

I was 10 the first time I ever performed. It was at a friend’s wedding, I think there’s a video somewhere on YouTube, it was in a church with my sister and we sung Miracles by Whitney Houston. I think there were about 100 people there. I was crazy nervous and sung the entire song with my hands behind my back. My sister and I would often sing and write together, so when I was about 12 years old my mum started to host gigs in our back garden, and we’d play hour long sets, with a mixture of originals and covers, for about 60 people once or twice a year.

How has living in Brighton helped you as an artist?

Brighton has loads of live music venues and I’ve sung at several of them. I’m in a couple of bands and they gig regularly which is always a lot of fun, and I’m looking forward to when I start to perform my own songs in those venues. The vibe across the whole city is great, people are so eager to hear something new and different so it’s a great place to be if you’re trying to stand out and take a risk, I feel like people respect you more for it.

How did BIMM Brighton help you develop as an artist?

I honestly don’t think I would be where I am now without BIMM. I had such a great experience, I would have done it again if I didn’t have to do exams. University taught me so much about what it means to be a performer, writer and a musician. I went in knowing it was going to be difficult in places, but I was willing to learn and I wanted to work hard, which really paid off. I had tutors who invested in me and spent time on me when they didn’t have to, and they were always encouraging and honest in their feedback to me.

When writing with other musicians do you stay true to Soul or have you experimented with other genres?

My course at university meant that I was encouraged to experiment with other genres, and I was able to sing other genres with lots of different musicians. Deciding what genre I wanted to do was really hard, and in honest truth, I don’t think I’ve come to a solid conclusion yet, although I’m probably not going to pursue a career in Metal. I love all kinds of music and I wanted that to come out in the songs that I wrote, I try to make sure that the musicians I write with are into different genres, this creates what I call “Soul etc”. It means that every song I write has an element of Soul and something else, I’m influenced by them and they’re influenced by me, which I think gives my music an edge.

Who are your inspirations in music and have they influenced your new single?

I love Soul and Gospel. I’m a big fan of artists like Fred Hammond, Alicia Keys, Tasha Cobbs Leonard, and Whitney Houston. I also love Justin Timberlake, I think the variety of genres that he brings to his music is something that I aspire to. This particular track was influenced by Alicia Keys. I love how her songs are simple but still have a huge impact. They’re also usually quite melodically orientated which is similar to my songs.